How to get an Apprenticeship… top tips from George, Year 11, Faringdon Community College

I’m George in Year 11 and when I finish my GCSEs this summer, I’ll be starting a Joinery Apprenticeship with Alser in Faringdon.

I’ve always liked making things and working with my hands. I know that I couldn’t work in an office – that’s just not for me! I enjoy helping my dad with woodwork jobs so decided that being a carpenter or joiner would suit what I enjoy and am good at.

I liked the idea of an Apprenticeship as you get paid for getting experience!

My dad knew someone at Alser and asked him if they have Apprentices there and they said that they did and would like to meet me.

I had to go for an interview, where they asked me about what I’m interested in to find out about me. I was a bit nervous about the interview but I had already been for an interview with a company in Swindon, which helped me feel more prepared as I knew what sort of questions they would ask.

I am going to be going to Swindon College at North Star in September as part of my Apprenticeship. I went to an open evening there to have a look around and find out all about what I’m going to be doing there when I start. I’m looking forward to it as I will get taught everything to do with joinery, not just focussing on specific things like you might do at work as that’s what you need to do in your job. It means that I will have a wide knowledge as well as specific experience.

My top tips... 

  • Going for interviews is great experience, even if you don’t get the job or decide it’s not for you. It helps you feel more prepared and less nervous next time.
  • Don’t leave it too long! Start early and look around as much as you can to find out all about what’s out there that you might be interested in.
  • Keep your options open. I applied for a full time course at Swindon College as well as my Apprenticeship, which meant I always had a back-up plan. Don’t just apply for one thing, give yourself other options and choices.